Harborfields BOE Adopts Community Led Bond Resolution; Community Vote Set for Dec. 11
By Beth Izzo
On October 16, the Harborfields Central School District Board of Education voted to move forward with a community-led bond resolution for athletic upgrades and asbestos abatement at Harborfields High School. The Board has authorized a vote date of Wednesday, December 11 for residents within the school district to vote on the proposed plan. Specifically, the project calls for the installation of two synthetic fields at the high school, renovations to the grass fields and baseball fields at the high school, and improvements to the high school corridor to remove asbestos floor tile.
The project being proposed to voters is the result of a community-driven petition submitted to the Board of Education on August 30, 2013. In any school district throughout New York State, community members are permitted to file a petition with the Board of Education for a specific purpose. The petition must contain a detailed list of criteria, including a minimum number of signatures by community residents. As explained by the district’s counsel at the September 18 Board of Education meeting, the Board is required to accept a community petition, as long as it satisfies all legal requirements.
Following acceptance of the petition on September 18 by the Board of Education, the project was required to undergo an environment impact assessment to comply with the State Environmental Quality Review Act. Again, this is mandated by law. The project was reviewed and deemed to be in compliance. Following this, the Board of Education, by law, was required to authorize a resolution to present the proposition to voters.
The total anticipated cost of the project is $3 million. After preliminary discussions with the New York State Education Department, it is anticipated that the district will be eligible for state aid, meaning that a portion of the total cost would be reimbursed to the district by the state. The annual cost impact for the average property within the district is estimated to be approximately $30 per year.
Residents are invited to attend a Community Forum on Wednesday, November 13 at 7 p.m. at Oldfield Middle School to learn more about the proposed project and ask any questions they may have. The vote will be held on Wednesday, December 11 from 2-9 p.m. at Oldfield Middle School. A simple majority of voters is needed for the proposition to pass.
For more information on the proposed project, please visit the district’s website at www.harborfieldscsd.net.